What’s in a name? Are you happy with the name your parents bestowed upon you? Do you believe that particular name has impacted how you see yourself and/or how others view you?
My name almost didn’t happen. My daddy had different plans. I was supposed to be “Angel Lamar” (Lamar was my father’s middle name). Now, when I think of that moniker, I find myself hearing a certain tune by David Rose . . . and a sultry voice saying, “Take it off. Take it ALLLL off . . .” (I could only think of fellow RA blogger AgzyM of I Want to Be a Pin-Up when I saw Miss Von Teese.)
However, one of my aunts by marriage (possibly envisioning the old bump and grind herself) made a suggestion. “Why don’t you name her ‘Angela Wood’ instead?” And so “Angel Lamar Killough” (Future Exotic Dancer?) morphed into “Angela Wood Killough” (Dreamy-Eyed Bookish Schoolgirl that I grew to be).
Baby girl Angela Wood. No stripper pole in her future.
Now, the “Wood” comes from my mother’s side–it was her maiden name. I loved my first name, but really disliked my middle name when I was growing up. My sisters called me (among other things) Woody (as in the cartoon character Woody the Woodpecker, as this was long before “Toy Story”). I pined for a “normal” middle name like “Leigh” or “Lynn.”
HA-HA-HA-HA-HA!! I heard Woody’s distinctive laugh a lot when I was a kid. *sigh*
Only when I was older did it sink in that my aunt’s suggestion was simply one following a “fine ole sutthun tradition” . . . of using a family name as a middle name. (It’s not unusual for them to be used as a first name, either. My dad had a cousin named “Killough Pollard.” I must say I am mighty glad I didn’t end up named “Wood.” I mean, do I look that thick?)
So while I eventually came to terms with my middle name, I never quibbled over my first name. I liked it, liked its classical roots.
Angela: from the Greek angelos, “heavenly messenger.” It came into use in English in the 18th century, and is most commonly used in English, Italian, German and Romanian. Common pet version is Angie (btw, only my immediate family called me “Angie” until I went away to college. Then everybody called me that or “Ang.” And “Angie” I have been ever since . . .)
So “Angel” or “Angela,” my name means the same. I’ve been a teacher and a newspaper writer and columnist, so I suppose you could say I’ve been a messenger of sorts. For the past couple of years here at The Armitage Effect, I’ve been preaching the gospel of TDHBEW, one might say. For the last few months, I have also been sharing the Armitage goodness at my RA Facebook page, “The Richard Armitage Effect.” I now have 426 “likes” over there–not bad. Of course, you have to blame it on the Beautiful One and the very real effect he has on so many of us possessing the Good Taste Gene.
Thank you to all who have supported this blog by reading, commenting, linking and reblogging. I don’t know everything year three will hold for me or for our wonderful fella. More Thorin, a big twister he’d BETTER survive . . . and what else? We may all be surprised along the way . . . come what may, thanks for being YOU, Mr. A.